The teenage years are notoriously tricky, but it is also a time when they need you as parents the most. During a time when they will almost definitely want to rebel, it is up to you to teach them that they must be responsible for their actions.
We have put together 5 tips to help your teenager become more responsible:
Let Them Show How Much Freedom They Can Handle
A good way to start is by reviewing how your child handles the freedom you give them. Be frank with them and tell them that you are ready to give them more freedom, but only if they prove that they are able to make the right decisions and be responsible for their actions. One way of proving this is by identifying whether your teenager keeps to a curfew when they are out, whether they make the right decisions when they are out with their friends and whether they take care of their assigned duties both at home and in school. Also talk to them about any potential situations they may get into when they are given more freedom, and find out what decisions they could make when they are in those situations.
Create A Schedule
Sit down with your child and together put down a schedule on how they will be managing their time, both in and out of school. Ensure that they are the ones to make decisions on the time they are expected to do their schoolwork, chores and curricular activities. If they are able to follow their own schedule, then it shows they have reached a new level of maturity.
Teach Life Skills
Your teenage child may be on the path to independence since they are able to focus in school and plan their time wisely, but even with that knowledge, some things are not taught in school, but are rather vital in everyday life. Teach them how to do their own laundry, to prepare a meal, how to manage their finances and how to forge good interpersonal relationships. If you are not in a position to identify what skills to pass on to your child, you can check out Adulting 101: Millennial Life Skills Classes which can identify exactly what your teenager needs.
Be Frank About Consequences
An important factor when teaching teens about responsibility is accountability for wrong decisions and the consequences of those actions. You need to lay down the rules to your child about what the consequences are when they break the rules that you have laid down for them or of any poor choices that they may make. Do not always rescue them when they are in trouble, give them space to learn what they have done wrong and to identify what they should do to rectify the situation. Having them learn on their own will be a good lesson since they felt first-hand the consequences of their actions.
Let Them Help Out
There are many chores around the house that your teenager should be responsible for and you should let them do it. By helping out with chores, they are able to gain a bit more responsibility as well as learning a few life skills here and there. In addition to housework, you can also encourage your child to be involved in community programs, like participating in community cleanup or helping out at an animal shelter. By making an impact on someone else’s life your teenager will gain more self-esteem and make them more responsible.